Robert William Watson: March 10, 1932 – May 22, 2024

Robert passed away in Napa, California peacefully surrounded by many of his family members.

Born and raised in Livingston, Montana, Robert was a graduate of Park County High School, class of 1950. Following graduation, he briefly attended Montana State University (MSU) in Bozeman.

On September 12, 1952 he was drafted into the Army. He was stationed in Pirmasens, Germany where he served in the 17th signal battalion. Later, because of his previous skills along with his 6’3” stature he was selected for his battalion’s basketball team. Also, in 1952 he married his first wife, and upon discharge from the Army on September 11, 1954 he and his young family moved to Bozeman where he reenrolled at MSU, completing a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering in 1958. Following graduation, he was hired by Boeing, where he would continue to work for the next 35 years. He raised 5 children in Bellevue, Washington, and in 1978 met and married Diane DeWeese. The newlyweds moved to Langley, Washington where they would welcome two more children into their lives. Langley remained their home for the next 40 years before they would move to Napa, where the weather was warm and family close.

Friends knew Robert as an extraordinary and generous baker, extending his talents to providing many well-received desserts and teaching his children and grandchildren about piroshky and flan. He was a loyal supporter of his many children and grandchildren’s endeavors, showing up to basketball, football, hockey, lacrosse, soccer games, ballet performances and music recitals alike. A man of diverse talents, he tended an impressive garden, played the piano and accordion, and played bridge throughout his life, earning the title of Life Master. One of Robert’s greatest loves were his golden retrievers which he doted on throughout the years. Barley, his fourth and last golden brought him joy, love, and companionship in his later years. He also enjoyed many hours of conversation with family and friends reminiscing about his life, stories we have learned from and cherish.

He was preceded in death by his parents Robert E. Watson and Helen (Boerke) Watson, Sister Patricia A. Ricci (Joseph), and infant son James W. Watson.

He is survived by his wife of 45 years, Diane (DeWeese) Watson, children Robert M. Watson (Gwen), J. Sandy Watson, Mary E. Watson, Charles E. Watson, Laurie A. (Jonathan) Hile, Dana A. (Randy) Hindman-Allen, James D. (Cleo) Watson, Katherine H. Watson, as well as 13 grandchildren, 14 great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.

An engineer, a veteran, a patriarch, a brilliant mind, an accomplished chef, and a fount of sarcasm, Robert was a loving constant in our lives. He will be dearly missed.

In honor of Robert’s memory, donations can be made to NorCal Golden Retriever Rescue: